The 76ers on Tuesday night reached a verbal agreement to sign Los Angeles Clippers unrestricted free agent Elton Brand.
That means they have the low-post presence they have desperately needed.
That means they have a rugged 6-foot-8 forward who has averaged 20 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks in a nine-season career.
Their agreement with Brand and agent David Falk was expected to be for five years with a value in the range of $80 million but could not be tendered until at least 12:01 this morning.
The arrival of Brand will create a major buzz in the area. But medical reports notwithstanding, the Sixers also have to hope he never becomes their Achilles' heel.
Brand, 29, is coming back from surgery to repair a ruptured Achilles' tendon; he returned to play the final eight games of last season with the Clippers, starting six times.
WARRIORS TO INK MAGGETTE TO 5-YEAR DEAL: The Golden State Warriors will sign high-scoring free agent Corey Maggette to a five-year contract worth around $50 million, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press on Tuesday night.
The person, speaking on condition of anonymity because the deal can't be announced until today at the earliest, confirmed Maggette will leave the Los Angeles Clippers for a lucrative long-term deal with the fast-paced Warriors, who outbid several suitors for the former Duke star. The San Francisco Chronicle first reported the deal.
Maggette, a 6-6 swingman who led Los Angeles in scoring last season, should fit splendidly into Golden State coach Don Nelson's pell-mell style of play. He averaged 22.1 points, 5.6 rebounds and 2.7 assists last season for the moribund Clippers, finishing slightly off his career highs in all three categories.
Maggette has been with the Clippers since 2000, longer than any other player. But Maggette and teammate Elton Brand opted out of the final years of their contracts last week, with Maggette turning down $7 million for next season.
The 28-year-old Maggette will trade places on the California coast with Baron Davis, who spurned the Warriors last week for his hometown Clippers. Davis, who was considered the Warriors' team leader until his abrupt decision to opt out of a $17 million deal for next season, accepted a smaller salary in Los Angeles for a long-term contract and the chance to team up with Brand and perhaps Maggette.
Instead, Davis looks to be stuck on another rebuilding Clippers roster. The club is expected to lose Brand as well, amid reports he has agreed to a long-term deal with the Philadelphia 76ers. The Warriors also made a play for the power forward, likely driving up Brand's price.
Davis' departure cleared room under the Warriors' salary cap for Maggette, who reportedly drew attention from Boston, San Antonio, Detroit, Utah and Orlando. Golden State apparently offered more money and a longer term than most of Maggette's suitors, who mostly couched their offers at the mid-level salary cap exception.
Maggette easily could fill the void left by underachieving Golden State swingmen Mickael Pietrus, who's expected to sign with Orlando, and Matt Barnes, who won't be back, according to Nelson.
Stephen Jackson and Al Harrington are the only veteran regulars under contract to the Warriors, but top basketball executive Chris Mullin has said high-scoring guard Monta Ellis and center Andris Biedrins both restricted free agents will be back at any price, hopefully with long-term deals.
NBA SETS CAP AT $58.680 MILLION: The NBA set its salary cap for the 2008-09 season at $58,680,000, clearing the way for teams to sign free agents and make trades Wednesday.
The tax level was set at $71.150 million and the mid-level exception was $5.585 million. Any team with a payroll exceeding the tax level will pay a dollar for each dollar it's over the amount.
The minimum team salary for 2008-09 was 75 percent of the cap, or $44.010 million.
This season's cap went up by more than $3 million over last season's, which was set at $55.630 million. Last season's tax level was $67.865 million and the mid-level exception was $5.356 million.
SUPERSONICS' NAME GONE FROM WEB SITE: There was another sign of progress in the Seattle SuperSonics' transition to Oklahoma City on Tuesday as the team's Web site was updated to include its new home.
A visit to SuperSonics.com redirects visitors to the NBA Oklahoma City site, where logos with the team's former name have been taken down.
The Oklahoma City franchise is using the Web site to take names from people interested in buying season tickets when they go on sale.
SuperSonics owner Clay Bennett announced last week that he would be moving the team to Oklahoma City after reaching a settlement to exit a lease at Seattle's KeyArena.
BEASLEY STRUGGLES IN SECOND GAME: Michael Beasley griped about some calls, tumbled after missing layups, then shook his head in disappointment after a rebound bounced off his outstretched hands.
His first summer league game drew raves.
In his second, well, Beasley looked like a rookie again.
One day after scoring 28 points in his much-hyped debut, Beasley returned to earth Tuesday, finishing with only nine points in Miami's 90-81 summer league win over New Jersey. The Nets' Jaycee Carroll scored five points on 1-of-6 shooting in 14 minutes.